Mulling Over Doctor’s Appointments

My rheumatologist spent 15, 20 minutes maybe with me. It was like pulling teeth to get a word in edgewise, and she was clearly trying to get rid of me. She also was clearly not ecstatic that I have been taking more and more OTC pain meds… but didn’t once offer to give me anything stronger.

She scolded me for that and for not taking my multivitamin. I explained how ill it was making me, despite taking it with food, and was told to either take it with food or start taking a different brand. I told her how ill I’ve been lately, and her one thing was to get blood drawn. Oh, and I tried to bring up that I’ve been pretty down for a while, and she said to tell her things specifically related to my RA – EVERYTHING is related to my RA, since it’s in my WHOLE body. You have to treat the patient, not just the symptoms or your one area when you’re a rheumy. Or, at least, refer me to someone I can talk to about depression and anxiety and panic attacks. Seriously.

It was like pulling teeth to get her to listen to me at all. Now, I haven’t actually been to the doctor all that much lately, but aren’t doctors supposed to be there for us? And help us figure out how to work with these wretched bodies we’ve been tossed carelessly by chance, karma, or some seemingly all-knowing creator? Isn’t that why they’ve gone to school so long? And get paid a shit ton of money?

She’s a nice rheumy, personality wise. Truth be told, the only reasons I went to see her included the fact that I’ve been so ill, that I wanted to start on medicine, that it was a good idea, blah blah blah. Mostly it was because I can go to the Medical College in Milwaukee for free until the beginning of November. Otherwise, I probably would have waited until I had everything set up here in Madison.

So now we come to the big question – did she know that I had this worked out with the hospital? And that she wasn’t getting paid the crazy awesome amount? Was she just busy? PMS-ing? Or am I reading too much into this appointment?

It really was the first one where I’ve come with a list of questions/concerns/complaints and was very vocal about them, and wanting to touch everything on that list during our time. Have I become annoying enough now that I’m advocating for myself?

On the upside, my opthamologist was so nice, and has handled people with RA before including those starting Plaquenil.

Speaking of, do I really want to start this medicine? What if it makes me sick beyond all reason and I miss GRADUATE school classes? I can’t afford to do that, but I also can’t afford to be as sick as I am lately and not do anything about it.

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  1. I had a similar experience with my new rheumatologist. She didn't seem to listen to anything I said and was very dismissive. I understand that doctors are rushed and everything, but at the same time we are coming to them for help and that attitude helps none.

  2. Yeah I understand about the whole depression thing. My doc's useless on that front too. I don't think doctors are very good with emotions. Maybe they block them out because otherwise they'd go mad? I mean, spending all your day with sick/dying people. Must be a bit of a bummer unless you disconnect somehow..

    As for the plaquenil, I don't know what other meds you're on just now or if you've had bad reactions in the past, but i've been on 400mg for almost 7 weeks with not a single problem. For all I know, I could be taking mints.lol But no, I actually think they're helping, it'll be a cuople of more months till I know for sure but I reckon you should give it a try. Good luck!

  3. On a multiple vitamin note, I get very sick with um too. But I found the best thing in the world. They now make gummy vitamins for adults, and they don't make me sick at all! My favorite brand is actually Targets store brand. Give um a try!

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